At Powell, OH cosmetic dentist Neal S. Patel’s practice, the jet-setting, in-office trend of “destination dentistry” has, quite literally, taken off. “I’ve found through many years in the industry that good dentistry drives referrals,” he says. “The results my patients experience are dramatic enough that they find themselves in their own social circles getting asked the question: ‘Who did your smile?’ Word travels and I am often seeing patients from other parts of the country who have seen my work on others firsthand, on my website, or in NewBeauty magazine and are seeking the same result.”
While word might travel fast, as Dr. Patel explains, this treatment option involves patients flying to his office, where he can then provide a way for them to achieve unprecedented smile transformations that may not be possible in their local areas. “I am able to complete a full smile makeover in as little as one day because I possess all of the tools and technologies of modern dentistry, along with the skill and experience to provide a comfortable experience and amazing results.”
Are patients surprised this is an option?
“There is nothing new about seeking out the best provider for your care—even if that provider is not in your hometown. But often the stopping point is the added expense of travel, especially with an extended stay that would be required with more traditional methods of dentistry. I offer people relief from that concern. I make the best use of their time and expenses by offering a virtual consultation followed by a carefully planned visit to address all their dental concerns in as little as one day. My office is outfitted with numerous technologies that allow a streamlined approach to dentistry. I employ 3D digital imaging, CAD/CAM technology and computer-guided dental implant placement. I have my own dental laboratory where restorations, or replacement teeth, are milled on the spot and ready that same day. And people can rest easy knowing I have many years of experience with these technologies and have spent my career teaching other dentists how to implement the same modern techniques.”
Do you find that this option makes for a more comfortable treatment experience, overall?
“Destination dentistry, or fly-in fly-out dentistry, allows people to prioritize what makes them feel comfortable and appreciated. My out-of-town patients choose me because of my experience, my office comfort amenities, and my extensive use of dental technology which allows for minimally invasive treatment, greater comfort and faster healing. Choosing to undergo a smile transformation is a big decision and my covering airfare helps people feel better about the time and financial commitment they are making.”
What is the most popular procedure people travel to you for?
“I built my travel dentistry service with the busy professional in mind. I understand that people just do not have time to make multiple visits and are likely to put off treatment especially if they consider it unpleasant. When people learn that I can complete crowns, veneers, even dental implants in such a short amount of time, it makes it worth the trip for them to know they can quickly resume normal activities with little to no downtime.”
Are there certain procedures that involve a set amount of downtime?
“If a patient comes to me with a need for a total smile rehabilitation, whether it’s because of multiple missing teeth or deterioration of existing tooth structure, there are multiple ways I can bring them back to full oral health and beauty. Sometimes the condition calls for removal and replacement of most or all teeth with permanent dental implants. While the procedure is usually completed all in one visit, the patient will benefit from staying overnight a few days before taking a commercial flight home. Because the dentistry and fabrication is done here at my facility, there is no waiting and my patients find great convenience in knowing no matter the condition of their smile, they can regain full beauty and chewing function in a very short amount of time.”